What's a good handgun for a beginner?

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What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by itzybitzyspyder » Sun Mar 03, 2013 3:41 pm

I've never owned a handgun and I was wanting to get one to become proficient with that particular handgun. I'm a good shot with rifles, but I've only shot a handgun a few times. I don't like the recoil at all. I want a gun that will last me a long time. I want to be able to take it apart and put it back together. I want minimal recoil. Any suggestions?
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Rev » Sun Mar 03, 2013 3:43 pm

I'd look around because I believe we've discussed this before, but I'd suggest a Glock 19 but I'd like to know a bit more about exactly what type of pistols you used that made you so weary of recoil.
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by itzybitzyspyder » Sun Mar 03, 2013 3:52 pm

I don't remember exactly. I know it was a 9mm. It was years ago so I may just be a big wus over it. I guess it just scared me as to how much power there was in such a small space compared to the stability that I'd always identified with rifles. Maybe not minimal recoil, but I don't want to buy a gun and be scared it'll jump out of my hands.
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Towanda » Sun Mar 03, 2013 3:58 pm

Make a few trips to a range, rent different pistols, and go with the one you are most comfortable and accurate with.

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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by furiousjorge » Sun Mar 03, 2013 3:58 pm

visit a good sized range and try a bunch of 'em. it should fit comfortably in your hand, point well, and you should be able to reach all of the controls without a lot of extra wiggling around. i'd stick with 9mm simply for the capacity/cost/availability factors, but everyone's recoil sensitivity is different - some find 45ACP more friendly than the snappier 9 and 40.

to keep it a bit more budget friendly, i'd suggest looking at the standard polymer offerings - glock, smith and wesson M&P, springfield. they're all vaguely similar, comparably priced, durable, and reliable. there will be a few others around by various manufacturers - taurus, CZ, etc that are worth checking out if the big 3 don't float your boat.

good luck and have fun.
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Chris_Carroll » Sun Mar 03, 2013 4:10 pm

I would consider something like the Ruger SR22 or the Smith and Wesson M&P 22. 22LR would be a lot cheaper and easier to shoot in volume while developing skills that would easily transfer to a defensive pistol.

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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Tenderfoot » Sun Mar 03, 2013 4:24 pm

Browning Buckmark or Ruger Mk II or III. Simple, reliable, affordable, and accurate. I don't think there is a better beginner handgun out there than either of these two.
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by RickOShea » Sun Mar 03, 2013 4:34 pm

Trebor has a pretty good thread on "picking your first defensive handgun" that may help, if you haven't read it already:

http://zombiehunters.org/forum/viewtopi ... 08&t=60104
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Belair56 » Sun Mar 03, 2013 6:59 pm

Try a few or at least handle them, I like Rugers,, P95, SR9 SR9c, SR22 have good reviews.............

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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by velojym » Sun Mar 03, 2013 7:10 pm

Especially for a beginner, I'll second the recommendations for a .22lr. They'll let you learn all the good habits without having to deal with recoil or the expense of centerfire calibers. Then, you can later pick up something bigger after gaining a bit of experience.
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by charadeur » Sun Mar 03, 2013 7:11 pm

Yes try a few as suggested. The one question I did not see asked is are you planning to get a concealed carry permit? Because that will help narrow down the options or at least you will have to consider the downside of a larger frame firearm. Also how much you will have to spend on ammo is a key factor. Right now things are in a panic mode but traditionally 9mm has always been the least expensive of the semi autos. Anyway a little more information is probably in order before you get a bunch of recommendations.
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by itzybitzyspyder » Sun Mar 03, 2013 9:00 pm

Good question. I won't be concealed carrying it. It's going in my bob after I get some rounds through it.
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by charadeur » Sun Mar 03, 2013 10:37 pm

itzybitzyspyder wrote:Good question. I won't be concealed carrying it. It's going in my bob after I get some rounds through it.
What do you foresee doing with this firearm in the BOB? Is it for hunting small game, large game, or protection from two legged predators?

If for small game a Rugar Mark III 22 cal. Hunter model. Get a bushing that allows for removal of the magazine disconnect. It is a PITA for take down for cleaning if you don't remove it. Plus the magazines will fall free (not a big issue in a 22 cal hunting firearm IMO.)

If for big game then a 357mag or 44mag revolver is in order. Ruger makes some great revolvers as does Colt and S&W.

If for protection I would look for a 12 to 15 round magazine. I like Sig, Ruger, Colt, and S&W pretty much in that order. Sigs are expensive but my absolute favorite to shoot (though my Colt Gold Cup is also hard to beat.) Ruger is a good bang for the buck and USA made to boot. You will see some people complain the quality is not what it used to be but Ruger quality today is much better than many other brands like Taurus. I would stay away from Taurus and I own two of them, They are not bad once you give them a trigger job but the cost of the firearm and doing the trigger job is more than a quality firearm like the Ruger. Unless of course you are comfortable with stripping the firearm and polishing metal yourself. I did this with my Taurus CIA model (spring kit from Midway) but you have to be comfortable with doing this kind of work. There are other good protection firearms like Kimber. They are also costly like Sig and I like Sigs a little better but this really comes down to personal choice. Again shoot several different ones as everyone has a model or brand that fits their hand and shooting style better.

Whatever you do take the NRA safety course. I know you have experience with long guns but really it can't hurt to take a course. I take one every few years just for the fun of it and to keep safety in the for front of my mind. After that you may decide you want to get a CCP. Even if you rarely carry it is nice to have a permit. It just makes it easier in most states to buy a firearm and if you want to carry you can. I started out only carrying when I was going to be in areas where I thought it might be needed to all the time after a few years. It is extremely unlikely that your movie theater or mall food court will get shot up but if it does wouldn't it be nice to be prepared?
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Lodewijk » Tue Mar 05, 2013 7:23 am

Get a .22 LR as your first handgun and work on the basics. Ruger Mark III, Ruger 22/45, Buckmarks, something like that would be good for an inexpensive and high-quality semiautomatic. You will never outgrow a good rimfire handgun (or rifle, for that matter) and it will give you a LOT of trigger time without killing your wallet. I have a blued Ruger Mark III Target and love it.

While you are doing that, try shooting everything you can get your hands on to figure out what you like in a gun, particularly where the trigger is concerned (striker, DA/SA, SAO, DAO, etc.). As long as it is from a reputable manufacturer (Glock, Beretta, S&W, H&K, Sig, CZ, etc.) it will work, or will work well enough to get you started. ZS likes Glock, and that's fine, but Glock is far from the only manufacturer out there. However, used Glocks tend to be inexpensive and readily available, which is nice.

Stick with 9mm/.40 S&W/.45 Auto for your first. All are fine and 9mm will be the least expensive.

For revolvers, look for S&W or Ruger and stick with .357 Mag so you can run .38 Special through it. Ruger revolvers tend to need some trigger work out of the box for DA, but they are built like tanks and clean up well.

Good luck.

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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Bender711 » Tue Mar 05, 2013 2:43 pm

Twenty fucking two. My recommendation is always a good pistol with a .22 conversion. This includes: Glock, CZ, sig, 1911. Pick which ever you think looks the coolest and blast away.

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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by GoSlash27 » Tue Mar 05, 2013 6:11 pm

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UTqo-4KUbA0" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by The Commander » Tue Mar 05, 2013 8:38 pm

I would recommend a 9mm and something with a safety. Learning on a .22 is for a child (you might be a child I dunno) and having a safety gives you that repetition/muscle memory and you'll be used to the recoil off the bat. If it's going to be a defensive pistol then definately get something else. Beretta's and Taurus's are pretty thick from a double stack standpoint. I'm not too familiar with Ruger 9mms. Some .22s are build differently (Mark II) than more common semi-autos too. 1911 .45s just feel right, but the capacity is lower than other calibers for a full size, they can be finicky with ammo, not 100% reliable (in my experience), recoil is not too bad for being a big round though. I'm not a high speed operator/instructor/Navy Seal so take what you will.
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Paul J » Tue Mar 05, 2013 9:05 pm

Yeah, you could "go to a range and figure out what works best for you" and you might leave the shop with a Luger and bigdot sights. Or you could google what the premier instructors in the world and US tier 1 units are rolling with. Your choice ..your own limited experience plus internet advice or ....... the collective knowledge base of true subject matter experts


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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Tue Mar 05, 2013 9:31 pm

Yeah, look at what Tier one units are using...

and end up with a Mk23. Or a Mk11. Or a laughable 1911 with a frame prone to cracking well-before any part replacement schedule says so.

What you're saying is that the OP is too dumb to understand the mission needs and choose accordingly. This must be a new trend, because I keep seeing more of the "you're too stupid to choose properly, so choose what I/an instructor/unit I like tells you to choose with no input from yourself" stuff, and it's sorta pissing me off. There's a reason there are several types and designs of handguns, as well as different sizes. I don't know of any Tier One units using Glocks, but they are a solid firearm, and in use by non-Tier One personnel where they meet that mission, like non-war-related firearm use. Some guys might want a safety, so the M&P and XD exist giving a couple of options on that front.
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by charadeur » Tue Mar 05, 2013 9:58 pm

Yes that is laughable. A firearm used by "tire 1" units is based on many things not the least of which is budget constraints and who bought the decision makers the nicest looking call girls. There are many great firearms that shoot better than what your police department or military is using but is outside of their budget. Lucky you are only buying one firearm and spending an extra $200 is not that much. When the military spends $200 more per firearm it equals billions of dollars. I have yet to see anyone walk out of a gun shop with a vintage Luger as their first firearm. It really is insulting to suggest that the OP can't make a good decision given the opportunity to try several firearms. I suppose he should not test drive his next car either.
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Paul J » Tue Mar 05, 2013 10:04 pm

Doctorr Fabulous wrote:Yeah, look at what Tier one units are using...

and end up with a Mk23. Or a Mk11. Or a laughable 1911 with a frame prone to cracking well-before any part replacement schedule says so.

What you're saying is that the OP is too dumb to understand the mission needs and choose accordingly. This must be a new trend, because I keep seeing more of the "you're too stupid to choose properly, so choose what I/an instructor/unit I like tells you to choose with no input from yourself" stuff, and it's sorta pissing me off. There's a reason there are several types and designs of handguns, as well as different sizes. I don't know of any Tier One units using Glocks, but they are a solid firearm, and in use by non-Tier One personnel where they meet that mission, like non-war-related firearm use. Some guys might want a safety, so the M&P and XD exist giving a couple of options on that front.


Of course you dont know of any teir one units using a glock...you are an Idiot ......BTW NO ONE uses the mark 23. And only USMC still issues 1911s Don,t interupt when grownups are talking please..........Ok since it's already been seen I'm not going to delete it , but I apologize for calling you an idiot..that was fucked up. However, you are severely uninformed on who is carrying what...please stop trying to sound like you are an SME and seek training and knowledge.

And for the record YES I am saying the OP does not have the resources or training to make an informed descision. Neither do I or YOU, difference is I know to look to the collective wisdom of those that do have the training/budget/mission statement to find what works
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Matt E. » Tue Mar 05, 2013 10:08 pm

Doc, when you write "MK 11", what are you talking about?
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Doctorr Fabulous » Tue Mar 05, 2013 10:15 pm

charadeur wrote: I suppose he should not test drive his next car either.
Nah, get what the Tier-One units are using:

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Matt: Mk11, the NSW Spec'd P228. I see it also typed as M11, or M11-A1. Sorry if there was some confusion.
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Re: What's a good handgun for a beginner?

Post by Paul J » Tue Mar 05, 2013 10:24 pm

Doctorr Fabulous wrote:
charadeur wrote: I suppose he should not test drive his next car either.
Nah, get what the Tier-One units are using:

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Matt: Mk11, the NSW Spec'd P228. I see it also typed as M11, or M11-A1. Sorry if there was some confusion.


Once again I said Tier 1 units, not white side SEALs. However I'm down with a Sig. It is a duty grade gun
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